Near and Far — Ellen Foos on two good bookstores

Senior Production Editor Ellen Foos takes on the question “Have you been to a good bookstore lately?”

As a life-long book lover I have many favorite stores. Two come immediately to mind. In the heart of a revitalization neighborhood in downtown Trenton, meet Classics Used and Rare Books. Owner Eric Maywar bends over backwards to draw people to his eclectic array of previously owned books. He hosts weekly chess and Scrabble matches, invites partnerships with local authors, organizes events with Trenton’s Downtown Association, and generally works hard and cheerfully.

I was recently in the small town of Johnson, Vermont, where Ebenezer Books has the market cornered for new books, with a nice children’s section. Owner Brad Fox brings books to sell when visiting writer’s come to read at the Vermont Studio Center. He is canny enough to bring exactly the right books for any particular audience. And he has also read many of them—a trait I find in most bookstore people (unlike the blank looks you get from sales staff in almost any other type of store these days).

Classics Used and Rare Books
117 S Warren St
Trenton, NJ 08608
(609) 394-8400

Ebenezer Books
2 Lower Main W
Johnson, VT 05656
(802) 635-7472


  1. I live in the city with Borders and Home Depot and Walmart. Good luck getting any help there. I make sure I know what book I am after before I go there. The computer they have there to search books is so dirty I am afraid to touch it. Big stores have ruined my neighborhood.